April showers love on occupational therapists

Apr 01 2015

April weather in Denver is predictably unpredictable. It can snow, it can rain, it can blow and the sun can shine. And that’s all by noon. Another thing we can count on here: occupational therapists. They’re some of the folks who can help people recover from on-the-job injuries. This month celebrates their contributions to the health of Colorado workers. In some cases of injury, it is simply not possible for a worker to return to their job. In those situations, occupational therapists can help the injured person to regain skills needed in everyday life and create goals — and strive…

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Going it alone: are risks of losing a workers’ comp appeal worth it?

Mar 25 2015

Going it alone: are the risks of losing a workers’ comp appeal worth it?The Colorado Department of Labor’s website is filled with information useful to workers injured on the job and who are filing for workers’ compensation benefits. On the site, you can find information on how the claim-filing process works and how the appeals process works, too. You’ll also learn that both processes can be tackled alone, without legal representation. But before you try to tackle an appeal of a comp decision that didn’t go your way, read through the rules of procedure. The rules are not optional; everyone…

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Disabled second baseman hopes to hit another homer

Mar 18 2015

As Denver fans of the Colorado Rockies will surely testify, there are few purely American passions that run deeper than the one for baseball. But even baseball fans might be taken aback by a recent headline: “It’s easier to win a World Series than get Social Security disability.” That’s the conclusion of a TV station that reported on the long and winding saga of World Series hero Brian Doyle. Long-time fans of the sport might recall Doyle as the light-hitting New York Yankees second baseman who helped the Bronx Bombers take the 1978 fall classic. Uncharacteristically, Doyle tore through Los…

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How much is a leg worth in Colorado?

Mar 11 2015

Look down at your legs. How much are they worth to you? Probably quite a bit. Be warned, however, that no matter how much they are worth to you, they are undoubtedly worth quite a bit less to a workers’ compensation insurer here in our state. If someone loses a leg in a workplace accident in Denver, for instance, the maximum compensation available is $162,869. Compare that to Alabama, however, where the most you can get from workers’ comp for an amputated leg is $44,000, according to ProPublica. ProPublica is a non-profit news organization that does investigative journalism in the…

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A look at the wheels on the bus going round and round

Mar 06 2015

You might remember that a couple of years ago, U.S. News & World Report gave the Denver-Aurora metro area the top spot in the publication’s nationwide ranking of public transportation systems. U.S. News pointed to our light rail line, bus system and airport shuttle service as evidence that no big city in the nation helps residents and visitors move around better than we do. Accolades are always nice, but when a transportation system is going in so many directions at once, there are also going to be risks of injuries and illnesses affecting bus drivers. Of course, any injuries or…

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March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Feb 25 2015

As the remaining days of February dwindle, we look ahead to March and the coming of spring. With spring comes a renewal of energy and sense of purpose. For people who have been diagnosed with colorectal cancer, or colon cancer, March is set aside as a month to make people more aware of the disease and ways to combat it and help prevent it. Colorectal cancer affects both men and women, the Centers for Disease Control says, and is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the nation. At Alverson + O’Brien, P.C., we join millions of Americans in…

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Colorado Department of Labor and Employment: fair warning

Feb 21 2015

When a Denver construction worker is injured on the job, one of the first things he or she might do after receiving medical treatment is to go to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment’s website. The site is crammed with useful information tailored to various audiences, including injured workers, employers, doctors, insurers and workers’ comp attorneys, among others. One very important group of people in the “among others” category is those who decide to represent themselves in critical disputes with insurers, employers or physicians over workers’ compensation benefits. As the Department of Labor and Employment states, most claims are…

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A plan for fixing Social Security for decades

Feb 11 2015

The issue is detailed and discussed more and more in newspapers and on websites Denver residents read. The issue is the looming budget shortfall for the Social Security Disability trust fund. As we have noted in this space before, if no funding fix is implemented, the trust will be able to pay SSDI/SSD beneficiaries only about 80 percent of their benefits. However, Sen. Bernie Sanders has come up with a solution detailed in a 12-page report. The solution is straightforward: eliminate the cap on payroll deductions. That simple step would mean that middle-class taxpayers and millionaires would contribute the same…

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Obama to Congress reluctant to fix: ‘No dice’

Feb 04 2015

We have in the recent past referred to a growing, dark cloud on the horizon. A fiscal crisis at the Social Security Administration could potentially mean that SSD/SSDI beneficiaries will next year see a cut of about 20 percent in benefits, if Congress and President Barack Obama don’t hammer out a solution beforehand. A recent editorial points out that the House of Representatives has declared it won’t agree to a solution that includes an easy fix to the problem that would involve a small shifting of retirement funds to the trust set up to pay disabled American workers. The editorial…

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Part II: Colorado study examines worker wellness program

Jan 28 2015

As our regular readers undoubtedly remember, our last post took a look at a Colorado-based study on how wellness programs might benefit both workers and employers. Past research has shown that in large companies, improved worker wellness can reduce workplace injuries and workers’ compensation costs. As its title suggests, the study called “Implementation of a Worksite Wellness Program Targeting Small Businesses: The Pinnacol Assurance Health Risk Management Study” examined potential benefits of wellness programs at small Colorado businesses. Of the 6,507 people studied, 38.9 percent are considered of normal weight, 34.3 percent were classified as overweight and 25.6 percent are…

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